Having graced our skies throughout most of July after brightening far more than predicted, comet NEOWISE is currently residing in Coma Berenices.

Discovered in late March by the Near Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, aka NEOWISE launched by NASA in 2009, comet NEOWISE became readily visible to the naked eye shortly after rounding the Sun in early July.  The comet was visible low to the north during the short hours of semidarkness in the twilight skies from approximately 23:00h until 02:45h.

After traversing to the left of Auriga, then across Lynx and through the feet of Ursa Major, NEOWISE was nearest to Earth on July 23rd some 64 million miles distant.  By then it lay approximately 16 degrees below the ‘bowl’ of the Plough.  As NEOWISE moved toward the Ursa/Coma border the comet became more of a very late evening object, a trend which will continue into August.

At its brightest during first half of July, NEOWISE reached Mag +1.3, easily within naked eye limits, certainly thru’ binoculars it was a spectacular sight.  As of writing (July 26) the comet has faded to 3rd magnitude and will continue to do so.  It is just within reach of naked eye visibility, but remains an easy binocular object.  The comet will not return until 8786AD so do make the most of any opportunity to view it in early August, probably after the 6th by which time moonlight won't interfere as much.

Member Photos of Neowise

12-Jul-2020: Comet Neowise, taken by Allan Bentley.

14-Jul-2020 at 00:55h: Comet Neowise, taken by Mark.

14-Jul-2020 at 01:02h: Comet Neowise, taken by Paul Cass.

20 Jul-2020 at 00:00h: Comet Neowise, taken by Paul Ming.

16-Jul-2020 at 23:08h: Comet Neowise, taken by Paul Wood.

16-Jul-2020 at 23:55h: Comet Neowise, taken by Paul Wood.

18-Jul-2020 at 23:11h: Comet Neowise over NY Moors, taken by Paul Wood.

18-Jul-2020 at 23:55h: Comet Neowise above Whitby Piers, taken by Mark.

19-Jul-2020 at 00:05h: Comet Neowise from East Pier, taken by Mark.

19-Jul-2020 at 00:32h: Comet Neowise taken from Whitby Harbour, by Mark.

20-Jul-2020 at 01:28h: Comet Neowise, taken by Richard Randle.

20-Jul-2020 at 22:55h: Comet Neowise, below The Plough, taken by Mark.